Media, Myth and Terrorism: A discourse-mythological analysis by Darren Kelsey (auth.)

By Darren Kelsey (auth.)

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Extra info for Media, Myth and Terrorism: A discourse-mythological analysis of the ‘Blitz Spirit’ in British Newspaper Responses to the July 7th Bombings

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Powerful institutions ‘provide the newspapers with modes of discourse which already encode the attitudes of a powerful elite. Newspapers in part adopt this language for their own and … reproduce the attitudes of the powerful’ (Fowler, 1991: 23–24). : 24). ). However, these can be consequences of automatic media practice, which demonstrate the close relationship between power and ideology. : 10). DMA investigates these multiple, ideological accounts of mythology that operate through the ideological articulations of different texts and practices.

There are a number of definitions of discourse that vary from one scholarly approach to the next. In addition to the conceptual understanding of discourse covered so far in this chapter, DMA sees discourse as ‘a culturally and socially organized way of speaking’ (Mayr, 2008: 7). Therefore, language and texts, from a functionalist perspective, are analysed in terms of the social practices of which they are part (Fairclough, 1995). The concept 32 Media, Myth and Terrorism of social practice also relates to Michel Foucault’s approach to discourse.

Like myth, it is argued that discourse can restrict and allow certain discussions of a topic: ‘Just as discourse “rules in” certain ways of talking about a topic … it “rules out”, limits and restricts other ways of talking … in relation to the topic or constructing knowledge about it’ (Hall, 2001: 72–73). Similarly, Flood acknowledges this dynamic in his approach to political myth. He argues that what qualifies as a salient fact is determined by interpretation, as are the accounts which the storyteller establishes: After all, in a finite discourse the selection of information necessarily entails the exclusion of other information.

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